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430 thoughts on “Baghdad Conference Photos

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  • Mary

    How about the caption underneath the photo? It makes Craig sound like a naughty school boy, or at least the Google translation does, and the subject of the book is stated incorrectly too if it is a reference to Burnes.

    Craig Murray in a short speech. Murray lost his post as British Ambassador in Uzbekistan for insubordination. Now he writes a book about the Middle East

  • Uzbek in the UK

    Shame the info is in German.

    At least I am glad to see that you Mr Murray still look good, healthy and full of energy – similar to when you challenged government thugs in Uzbekistan.

    As of Baghdad, it looks like peaceful city with few police check blocks and at least one grand hotel.

    But as you said in your previous blog it is worse than Uzbekistan, which I have no reason not to believe you. It can add to the thesis that order comes before democracy and freedom and it is not possible to build free and liberal society in disorder. One also should question whether it was worth removing one tyrant to replace it with another tyranny that emerges from disorder that caused million of lives. Something I am sure intellectuals in Central Asia (and in Uzbekistan in particular) are asking themselves.

  • Arbed

    @ Mary 12.02pm – I agree, there’s a wealth of mischaracterisation in that caption.

    O/T, but of general interest to the blog’s readership, I think. (Below has been reasonably well-reported yesterday but I’ve seen no mention of it here, so just in case you’ve all missed it…)

    A new way to donate to Wikileaks, the Freedom of the Press Foundation, has been set up by such luminaries as Daniel Ellsberg, Glenn Greenwald, John Perry Barlow and Trevor Tim of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Micah Lee and others. It’s quite clever in that Wikileaks is ‘bundled’ with other deserving free press causes and you use a slider to set who gets how much and your donation just appears on credit card or bank statements as “Freedom of the Press Foundation” (tax deductible in the States too). Here’s the link:

    More details here:

    Crowd-Funding the Right to Know:


    New press freedom group is launched to block US government attacks:

    and here:

    Group Launches to Encourage Transparency & Aggressive Journalism, Help WikiLeaks Survive Blockade:

  • Anon

    Possibly Major Breaking News

    Conflicting reports now that Iraqi President Talabani is dead. Other reports say in a coma.

  • Uzbek in the UK

    Interesting. Nothing on BBC about Talabani’s death.

    Is it because British Armed Forced withdrew from Iraq and whatever happens there is no British public’s concern anymore? Even death of the president which could cause some political turmoil?

  • Anon


    BBC reporting he is “in coma after stroke” – yes they put it in quotes.

    Iraqi President Jalal Talabani ‘in coma after stroke’

    Iraqi President Jalal Talabani is said to be in a coma in hospital after officials and media reported he had suffered a stroke.

    A statement on his website said President Talabani was in a stable condition and was being treated for blocked arteries.

    Well-placed Kurdish sources say he remains in a coma.

  • norse

    Kind words about Tony from Gilad

    “Palestinian officials say Tony Blair shouldn’t take it personally, but he should pack up his desk at the Office of the Quartet Representative in Jerusalem and go home. They say his job, and the body he represents, are “useless, useless, useless”.’

    But Tony actually prefers to dwell in Jerusalem. Being a war criminal, it is much safer for him to stay in the Jewish capital. Also Tony isn’t really useless, he is actually very useful for some – Tony is not a Sabbath Goy, he actually serves his minders 24/7..

  • MJ

    “it is much safer for him to stay in the Jewish capital”

    There isn’t a Jewish capital. Jerusalem is the capital of Palestine. The capital of Israel is Tel Aviv.

  • Anon

    OT: But there are many in the industry who think the USA is exaggerating its shale gas an oil resources.

    The USA is still a net importer of natural gas (mainly from Canada) and for now even the US Energy Information Administration thinks the shale gas boom has levelled off. See projection at

    Arthur Berman has argued on The Oil Drum that the decline actually started some time ago and only “dubious” production estimates EIA are holding it flat.

    Drilling count for gas has collapsed with the US price collapse. The wells were drilled expecting a very minimum price of between $6 and $8 per million btu (more than twice current US trade price). Current UK price is 66p/therm = £6.60 per million btu = $10.71 per million btu.

    So while it is true that US bulk natural gas is currently about 1/3rd of the UK price it is almost certain the US price will rise back up over $8 before drilling picks up again.

    Prior to the drilling of the current shale gas “boom” US bulk natural gas price reached higher prices than the current UK rate and are probably headed that way again over the next few years.

    Fracking isn’t all it’s fracked up to be.

  • Habbabkuk

    To lighten things up a little : what do Tory luminaries David Cameron, William Hague and Jeremy Hunt, bust flushes Ed Balls, Yvette Cooper and James Purnell, eager young thrusters like Ed Miliband and Rachel Reeves, and the two HoC resident rottweilers the Eagle twins (Angela and Maria) have in common?

  • Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    Except it was a largely Jewish neighborhood, Guano. Blamed on Aspergers…..harddrive on he boy’s computer destroyed….Mother a survivalist……Dad connected with Aurora Co, shooter from 1 year ago……connected to LIBOR………synchronicity is a falsehood which must be debunked by all rational human beans.

  • Mary

    This Israel friendly sentence is ALWAYS included in a BBC report on settlement building.

    ‘The settlements are considered illegal under international law, though Israel disputes this.’

    17 December 2012 Israel approves East Jerusalem settlement plans The Ramat Shlomo plans caused a diplomatic incident when they were
    published in 2010

    The Israeli authorities have approved plans to build 1,500 more homes at a Jewish settlement in East Jerusalem.

  • Mary

    Yet Netanyahu continues with these plans in spite of his main donor’s objections…..

    US condemns Israel plan to build settler units in East al-Quds
    Tue Dec 18, 2012 6:22AM GMT

    The United States has criticized the Israeli regime’s plan to construct some 1,500 illegal settler units in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.

    US State Department spokesman Victoria Nuland criticized the Tel Aviv regime on Monday for its decision to construct more settler units in East al-Quds (Jerusalem).

    Nuland called on the Israeli authorities to refrain from “unilateral actions,” saying that Washington’s stance regarding the construction of illegal settlement has not changed.

    The remarks came after Israel gave the initial approval for the construction plan on Monday.

    In reality, Obama is only maintaining through a pretence.

  • Mary

    Correction there. In reality, Obama is only maintaining a pretence.

    I had written ‘In reality, Obama is only going through the motions’ but decided that, as there was a double meaning, I should change it!

  • English Knight

    Agent Cameron is increasingly bold and strident about support for his Israeli ilk and sponsors. Political suicide one would think, with the election only two years away (incl the Scots referendum), let alone causing a wipe-out of his Lib-Dems partners, who may be seen as willing participants in the Israel firsting jamboree. With the Queen attending cabinet, mebbe Agent C is emboldened by being privy to some very inside information. A combined across party vote of the Friends, and Fans of gay marriage (which he is also pushing for) should be enough to delay an election – during Syria/Iran war time?!!

  • Mary

    Cherie Blair: ‘It’s always been about women and girls’

    Still the only PM’s wife to work full-time while her husband was in office, trailblazing barrister, campaigner and frequent media target Cherie Blair gives a rare interview to the Guardian

    WTF? Rare interview? It is not very long ago that she was sitting on a BBC World Service sofa spouting the same stuff to an adoring and impressionable Zeinab Badawi.

    Who funds her anyway? Tony? His rich pals in Tel Aviv or the US?

  • Mary

    I can answer my own question.

    ‘Yet her foundation, which raised £4m in its first three years from blue-chip companies (such as Vodafone) as well as the Blairs themselves, has been busy with mentoring and technology projects helping women in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. The day after she launches a software project in India, the Guardian is granted a 20-minute interview to talk about the foundation’s work in Cherie’s stately private office.’

    Yeah right. One is Vodafone who avoid paying their taxes. Upchuck time when you see who the other ‘donors’ are.

  • Clark

    Mary, I know nothing of the situation in Nigeria, but in the UK, text messaging is ludicrously overpriced, a rip-off comparable with ink cartridges. My “Pay As You Go” account charges me £0.15 for each text of 140 characters. At that rate, a typical Internet connection with a 10GByte download limit would come to about £10,000,000 per month. That’s not exaggeration for effect; do the maths; one byte equals one character. “Packages” and “bundles” can work out tens or hundreds of times cheaper, but that’s easily subsumed in that factor of one million.

    Ink cartridges – £20 to £30 for 0.06 litre of coloured water in the sort of plastic box you’d throw away if was a disposable lighter. It makes you realise just how cheap petrol and other fuels are, at about £0.50 per litre before tax, cheaper than most bottled water.

    Looking at figures like those, the various companies have so much room for competing by undercutting each other, I can’t believe that these are “free markets”.

  • Clark

    Sorry, liquid hydrocarbon fuel is about £0.60 per litre before tax – for a substance that has to be drilled out from miles below ground either in deep ocean or a war zone.

    So taxpayers pay for the monetary cost of war, foreign civilians and Western military personnel pay with their lives, and future generations pay in ecological damage. The hydrocarbon companies make a large profit, but the corporate system and Western society still get the cheap bulk fuel price they’re addicted to.

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